The 22nd Women in Management, Business, and Public Service, WIMBIZ, annual conference kicked off on Thursday November 2, 2023 in Lagos with a clarion call on women to embrace positivity and build resilience.


Emphasising these values at the event attended by over 2,000 women from diverse walks of life, were the Executive Director, WIMBIZ, Hansatu Adegbite; Paul Onwuanibe, Group CEO, Landmark Africa Group; Bimbo Oloyede, CEO/Lead Consultant, Strictly Speaking; Bola Matel-Okoh, CEO, BMO Advisory Services; Victoria Ekhomu, CEO, Trans-World Security Systems; Tolu Ita, pioneer female pilot, Aero Contractors; and Captain Simon Melchior, CEO, ASSECO Software Nigeria Limited, amongst others.


Speaking at the conference themed ‘Mission I’mpossible: Thrive’, Adegbite said the theme was pertinent because a lot had gone wrong around the world, across the country and in personal lives, which had doubled the challenges faced by women.


“We cannot deny the fact that there have been a lot of challenges even to organisations, businesses, and women in whatever profession they are in. It is therefore important for us to constantly reignite women who carry seeds inside of them that still need to be activated for greatness.


“With seeds, all that is needed is something to activate them, to produce fruits. So, I want to urge women to develop a resilient spirit and maintain a positive mindset. Let that seed in you be activated, and let your path to greatness be a step at a time; and one day, your story will be heard,” Adegbite said.


Also alluding to stories of multinationals that began as small businesses, in his keynote address, Onwuanibe, while reeling out eight principles for success in business, prodded women, saying: “It is important that you learn to get going especially when things are hard. Success in any endeavour is dependent on dreaming and having a staying power.”


Reassuring entrepreneurs that tough times never last but only tough people do, Matel-Okoh, on her part, reiterated the need to be more focused on building a brand that creates values, maintaining consistency and staying committed.


Others who spoke at the WIMBIZ confab included Dr.Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi, the Executive Director, Women Advocates Research & Documentation Center, WARDC, who urged the private sector to partner the civil society and the public sector in the fight against all forms of violence against women.